Monday, September 3, 2012

Billboard Voter Registration Campaign Kicks off Labor Day - KERA News

The Dallas Regional Chamber has launched a “Vote 2012” initiative this Labor Day Weekend. It’s designed to get more people registered to vote in the November elections.

The Dallas Regional Chamber’s Vote 2012 campaign includes billboards in eight locations encouraging people to register to vote by October 9th. And three Chamber staff members are now trained Volunteer Deputy Registrars. They’ll be registering people to vote at Chamber activities for the next five weeks.

The Chamber’s John McCarley says public policy … and influencing it … is one of the main goals of the Chamber’s five-year strategic plan.

“One of the most obvious ways to do that that everybody can get involved is to get out and vote,” said McCarley. “So, this Labor Day Weekend, we are pushing a get registered to vote campaign for those that might have moved to the area, or have changed addresses. It’s really kind of pushing them to vote and make their voices heard this November.

Chamber CEO, Ambassador Jim Oberwetter says the November election is extremely important and the Chamber wants to make sure the voice of business is heard.

Longtime Dallas voting rights activist Peter Johnson wants to see everyone’s voice heard at the polls in November.

“It is to me, as a society, one of our most sacred rights is the right to vote to determine your leadership; who’s going to lead our community, who’s going to lead our city; who’s going to lead our state, who’s going to lead our nation,” said Johnson.

Johnson says he plans to spend the next month encouraging people to register to vote if they are not already. And follow through at the polls November 6th. Johnson says he’s pleased a federal appeals court struck down the Texas Voter ID law last week.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott is not, and plans to appeal to the Supreme Court.

“Four years ago, the Supreme Court ruled that Vote ID was perfectly constitutional. We believe this decision divides America, allowing one set of laws to be applied elsewhere, a different set of laws to be required in Texas,” Abbott said.

Attorney General Abbott says Voter ID will not be in place for the November 6th election.

And that’s a message Secretary of State Hope Andrade will bring to local election officials during a visit to the Dallas-Fort Worth area tomorrow. She says there’s some confusion over the ID issue and redistricting â€" both subjects of recent court rulings.

September is National Voter Registration Month. Andrade says registration forms may be downloaded from the Secretary of State’s website, filled out and mailed.

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